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Why do we have to reset Preferences????

Message 1 of 7
419 Views, 6 Replies

Why do we have to reset Preferences????

hi all,


from time to time (even when nothing changed in the maya system), the preferences in maya get screwed up and the only workaround is to delete the preferences and let maya generate fresh ones....


why this happens is a mystery!!! and it happens randomly...


it is very annoying, when you setup a working maya system, and with no obvious reason, the whole setup stops working, and you have to setup everything new...


Message 2 of 7
in reply to: willi_soulcage

In 5 years I had to do that only once. 

Remember to share your knowledge. That's good for everyone!


[Maya 2018.6/2020.4]
[Windows 10 Pro 64 bit Intel i9 9900K 32GB]
[Asus TUF RTX 3060 Ti]
Message 3 of 7
in reply to: MrMeireles

oh wow!!!

then you can play lottery, you are a lucky guy!!! 🙂


(that experiance i only had when using softimage...)


Message 4 of 7
in reply to: willi_soulcage

I use this small .bat script to make a backup of my Maya preferences once a day (Windows automation). So even if I my preferences get corrupted, I can usually just copy over the backup from yesterday and keep all my settings. The script uses 7-Zip for compression. You need to edit the path to match your username.


As to your original question: I have no idea.


@Anonymous OFF
SET hr=%time:~0,2%
IF %hr% lss 10 SET hr=0%hr:~1,1%

Set TODAY=%date:~4,2%-%date:~7,2%-%date:~10,4%-%hr%%time:~3,2%%time:~6,2%%time:~9,2%


ECHO Compressing files
"C:\Program Files\7-Zip\7z" a -tzip "C:\Users\USERAME\Documents\" "C:\Users\USERNAME\Documents\maya\*" -mx5


Message 5 of 7

Hello, Experiencing issues with Maya preferences getting corrupted or reset can indeed be frustrating. While I can't provide a definitive answer without access to your specific system and configuration, there are a few common reasons why this might happen. Let's explore some possibilities:

Software Updates: Sometimes, updates to Maya or other software on your system can conflict with existing preferences, leading to unexpected behavior. It's essential to ensure that you're using the latest version of Maya and that your operating system is up to date.

Third-Party Plugins or Scripts: Certain plugins or scripts installed in Maya may not be fully compatible with your version or with each other. Incompatibilities can cause crashes or issues that affect preferences. Try disabling third-party plugins one by one to identify if any of them are causing the problem.

Hardware or Driver Changes: Changes in your hardware or graphics drivers can also impact Maya's behavior. If you recently updated or changed your graphics card drivers, it could be a potential cause. In such cases, try reverting to a stable version of the drivers or updating to the latest compatible ones.

You can visit this page to learn more about lotteries 

Message 6 of 7

thx for the reply...


now meanwhile after 3 years of having to reset the preferences frequently, i can say, from my experiance, that mostly the prefs get corrupted when arnold-plugin is not loaded...

so keeping arnold-plugin loaded can prevent the prefs from corruption...

Message 7 of 7
in reply to: willi_soulcage

Actual preference corruption is very rare.

Rather what tends to happen is is Maya remembers many option box or tool setting changes across sessions so when you fire up Maya it goes right back to the state it was in last.

One example new users often hit is they accidentally tap B which enters soft selection and then the next time Maya starts up they are back in soft selection and can't understand why they can't select individual components.

In many cases it is easier to tell the user to reset their preferences than to spend the time to figure out what the actual issue is which is why this solution is so popular.

In recent versions of Maya the userPrefs.mel file has been modified to only write out preferences that have actually changed and all the preferences are grouped into categories. This makes it easier to diagnose issues or recent certain preferences. (for a specific tool or category)

Finally, some things like panel configuration (UI layout) and recent files has been moved to a separate preferences file so depending on the issue you may only have to reset some preferences.

Brent McPherson
Principle Engineer

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